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In Cleveland, hope dies last

Archive for the tag “Ubaldo Jimenez”

Is it worth the risk?

jimenez riskHow much risk is too much for a team to take on when it considers a particular player?

That’s the question currently facing the front offices of the Cleveland Indians and Cleveland Browns.

The Indians are heading into the off-season in the surprisingly spot of having to make a tough decision on starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez. The Browns are facing a decision on wide receiver Josh Gordon as well, but for entirely different reasons.

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Tribe wants Ubaldo to focus on the here and now

The Cleveland Indians, desperate for any kind of starting pitching, are doing what they can to try and boost Ubaldo Jimenez’s confidence as another disappointing season winds its way down.

Rather than focus on the big picture – one that reveals Jimenez as a 1-9 pitcher with an ERA of 7.13 since the All-Star break – the team is working on a more micro level, trying to get the right-hander to focus on the fact that he has struck out an average of 9.31 batters per nine innings since Aug. 9. He has also improved his strikeout-to-walk rate, which is 3.08 since Aug. 9, quite an improvement over the 1.29 mark he had prior to that date.

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It’s time to accept Ubaldo for what he is, Tribe fans

Another day, another disappointing outing for Cleveland Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez.

At least that is the feeling among many Tribe fans after watching Jimenez give up five runs, seven hits and five walks in just 5.2 innings of work in Thursday’s loss to Tampa Bay.

But the reality is, this is the new normal for Jimenez, and the sooner Tribe fans accept it the better off they will be.

For every five-game stretch, like the one in June where he posted a 2.78 ERA in 32.1 innings of work (covering five starts), we are going to get a July stretch, where Jimenez has worked just 16 innings in four starts, posting a 7.31 ERA for the month. Before Thursday’s game against the Rays, Jimenez faced Toronto, lasting just 2.1 innings and giving up eight earned runs.

“I thought Ubaldo battled well for us,” Indians manager Manny Acta said. “He gave us five innings for us to do something, to score runs, and we couldn’t do it. And in that (sixth)  inning, it’s too bad, because he couldn’t come out of there with a very good outing.”

That’s a bit of an understatement.

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